It wafts out of the same demented hallway monsters march out of also:
the vampire sings, laughter follows. A machine modified to present
clear and present danger keeps the bellies stretching silk shirts
bouncing. It is casual Friday on Monday and everyone wants their share
of the orchestra. The ground shakes; it was the earth’s laughter forgetting
the whole town sleeps at night. All rise, the chandelier rises by falling
and laughter follows home the man whose car was totaled
on the highway in a hit-and-run. The clerk at the tow yard
laughs at the consistency of accidents, stories of accidents, accidents
caused by looking at accidents. Beneath that junkyard of smashed cars,
the broken jaws of bumpers, there’s an underground skyscraper
at the bottom of which someone feels like king. There are no kings
only magicians of the singular, making unlike the like.
Bound in image, away they walk.
Up the Depths
The market is alive with one thousand toothpicks stabbed into olives soaking in white wine. A giant cardboard box only moveable by machine is overwhelmed with watermelons. Now clouds and stars are more than nuts and bolts securing the walls of the sky, provided by the eye that watches like an ostrich in an eggshell, awaiting revolution. Revolution marches out of the mind rewinding. It knows history as the long waterslide you wait in line to ride which ends where the hundred-headed hydra hoards several severed heads in its golden catacomb.
Daniel Ruiz is a Puerto Rican poet and translator. His first collection of poetry, Reality Checkmate, will be published by Four Way Books in Spring 2025. He is a recipient of fellowships from the Fulbright Foundation and the Michener Center for Writers and is a two-time finalist for the National Poetry Series. His poems can be found in POETRY, Missouri Review, Bennington Review, Interim, and elsewhere. He is currently pursuing a PhD in English & Literary Arts at the University of Denver.